I'm a veteran too, be careful. If you ever plan on owning your own restaurant, it'd be wiser to get a business degree instead of going to culinary school.
That being said, it's all up to the attitude of the individual, sure teachers can teach, and there might be some really good ones, but as the saying goes: You can lead a horse to water, you can't make it drink.
I saw a lot of students graduate only to work at outback steakhouse. Taking an internship/apprenticeship/stage in a kitchen is more beneficial in my opinion.
That being said, I would go to school in New York since they have one of the best culinary scenes in America, and your classmates and chefs you network with may be able to hook you up with an entry level position somewhere nice.